About the Match
South Africa bounced back as expected and levelled the series 1-1 against Australia to keep the fight alive down under; they now go head to head for the third ODI on 19th Nov at Canberra. With the two teams vying for the lead, the fans will surely expect a tough contest on the cards; the players from both sides are enthusiastic and will come out all guns blazing to get an upper hand here with two more matches to go after Wednesday’s game.
The batsmen couldn’t keep the tempo up against Morkel’s pace attack and they were all bundled out for 154 by the 42nd over itself; it was a dismal performance and except for Mitchell Marsh, who scored an impressive 67 off 88 balls, the others gave up easily against the visitors. Players like Finch, Warner, Smith and Maxwell, who have been in good form failed to rise up to the expectations and they couldn’t get the scoreboard ticking. On the bowling front though Hazlewood continued his charms with the ball and claimed 5-31, the score wasn’t good enough to keep the proteans from winning the match by 3 wickets. There are some changes made to the squad with Mitchell Johnson being rested and Clarke out due to injury; Mitchell Starc will replace the speedster while Xavier Doherty, who has been successful in the domestic circuit will be brought in as the spinner. George Bailey who is performing the duties as captain of the side has pretty good resources here and the team will certainly come back stronger to dominate the visitors yet again.
Morne Morkel’s magic brought the team sweet victory as he achieved career best figures of 5-21 against the Aussies on Sunday; with this win, South Africa has drawn level with the hosts and will come back with renewed spirit on Wednesday. Dale Steyn too was impressive with his 3-wicket haul and will continue to be a key asset for the team; Philander and Behardien got a wicket each while Imran Tahir, the specialist spinner, was successful in reigning in the Aussies. With just 155 runs to chase for, the batsmen were under no pressure and achieved the target within 28 overs with AB de Villiers continuing his good skills with the bat. The captain posted a good 48 off 41 deliveries and missed out his half-century because of Hazlewood, who was responsible for the dismissals of Quinton, Plessis and others. With support from Rossouw and Miller at the end, the team pulled off a victory comfortably but players like Hashim Amla and Behardien need to step up and give a better performance going forward. It is an uphill task but the players look motivated enough to keep the winning momentum going.
While Australia started off on a winning note, their recent defeat and subsequent changes in the team will surely test their skills to adapt as a team and do well. South Africa, on the other hand, received a major morale boost after their thumping victory and will come back stronger. Though the contest could go down to the wire, we feel South Africa will use its capabilities and take the lead with a win here.
South Africa, 2.10 @ Bet365